NADAC Forum

2017 Championships => General Championships Discussion => Topic started by: Heidi Konesko on June 03, 2017, 05:49:28 PM

Title: Are there Champs specific life skills?
Post by: Heidi Konesko on June 03, 2017, 05:49:28 PM
Having attended once but never having run at champs myself, I am thinking that there are life skills specific to the event that maybe we could work on or incorporate between now and then in order to be better prepared and have a better experience at the event. I'm thinking things like how to keep my dog in a good mental state when waiting our turn, how to keep my mental energy up over the four days, how to memorize a longer than usual length course, and how to remember it for hours before you need to run it, etc. If people have suggestions and tips to share maybe some of us could start to practice those skills now and possibly have a better first Champs  experience for ourselves and especially for our dogs. 
Thanks, Heidi in NH
Title: Re: Are there Champs specific life skills?
Post by: Chris Nelson on June 03, 2017, 06:02:42 PM
I'm sure lots of people will chime in, but I wanted to say real quick we definitely won't have 46 obstacles!
Title: Re: Are there Champs specific life skills?
Post by: Heidi Konesko on June 03, 2017, 06:16:33 PM
Oh sorry I was just attempting to be lighthearted!
Heidi
Title: Re: Are there Champs specific life skills?
Post by: danforth on June 03, 2017, 06:23:27 PM
I would also like to have a list if life skills.  To I was told that a couple of boxes of baking soda are good to have if you are using a stall.  The powerhouse under the tarp to counter the older.

Isabel

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Title: Re: Are there Champs specific life skills?
Post by: ricbonner on June 03, 2017, 09:03:45 PM
The most important thing I can offer is to relax.  The first time running at champs can be a little stressful.  It is different than a regular trial and there are some unknowns until you actually experience it.  This can create a lot of worry and anxiety.  I think the best thing is to focus on your dog.  In my experience, many of the differences at Champs versus a normal trial are either helpful to the dogs or completely neutral in how it affects the dog.  Many dogs actually perform better.  So relax and run your dog and enjoy the experience.  Let the stress fall away and appreciate the moments in the ring.

As far as remembering the courses, if you are late in the order, you will have the chance to watch the course being run by lots of teams.  After watching 20 or 30 dogs, the course is pretty easy to remember at that point.  I find it much easier to remember the course at champs than at a regular trial.  The walk is a little longer, there is more time between the walk and the run, and there is only 1 course to learn in each half/day.  Where as at a regular trial, walks are usually more limited to just a couple/few minutes and the run is almost immediate, there is often very little chance to see other teams run it, and there is a new course to learn every hour or so.

One other point I would offer, and this is not just for champs, is to be happy for any team's success.  Yes, its a competition and we are keeping score.  But more so it is a personal journey for each team.  I try to see each team in terms of their own journey and celebrate their success and achievement.  I think that perspective makes for a much more pleasant experience - for everyone involved.
Title: Re: Are there Champs specific life skills?
Post by: AndreaEntin on June 04, 2017, 08:22:10 AM
Don't over think it.  It is just another trial with prettier ribbons and awards.  More you wind yourself up or psyche yourself out the worse it will be.  Just another trial, go have fun with your dog. 

Andrea
Title: Re: Are there Champs specific life skills?
Post by: Sharon, AZ on June 04, 2017, 09:37:24 AM
At the risk of sounding sappy, I am going to say, Appreciate It, really Savor It.  The time with your dog, the time with people you've long admired, the support, the adrenaline, the tests.  Stay flexible, that is a test, too.  Run one course at a time and don't change things (your routine, your demeanor, etc.) because it is champs.  Just do what got you there.  The PA was a constant issue  for us.  Just another test.  I still can not believe Beau and I were able to go and it is a well loved memory.
Good luck!  Sharon, AZ
Title: Re: Are there Champs specific life skills?
Post by: Maureen deHaan on June 04, 2017, 01:34:54 PM
My life skills at champs has always included staying positive, cheering for everyone, avoiding drama, getting enough sleep and staying light ....
Title: Re: Are there Champs specific life skills?
Post by: Margaret MacEwen on June 04, 2017, 04:26:40 PM
I echo what others have said and this does not apply to you Heidi because you are always positive but for anyone else who is new....Keep things positive for your dogs and for those who are around you.  Personally, I can only attend Champs every other year when is it closer to me.  I missed out one year because I lost my heart dog and my next prospect was just not ready and that tough.  So, I have really looked forward to the times I have been fortunate enough to participate.

After waiting approximately 730 days to attend my next Championship, PLEASE, I don't want to be near a single negative thought or  listen to someone vent because they cannot "hang loose".  Also, many competitors have worked though issues with their dogs, saved money or worked on building their own confidence enough to finally get there.  SO, PLEASE...expect the unexpected.  Things change last minute. Not everything that has been carefully planned will happen as planned.  A lot of work goes into this event, and there are bound to be disappointments, so keep things in perspective.

As for the dogs, ensure they have some quiet time and that they are comfortable in their crating situations.  It can get noisy and in my experience, the crating areas and stalls are way more noisy than your average weekend trial.  Let them be, but be sure to check on them and let them stretch their legs.  Meal times also get screwed up because you don't want to feed dinner right before a run. This usually applies to dinner more than breakfast.  With this, potty time may also get screwed up, so keep that in mind.

I am so glad you are coming Heidi.  The first time I met you was at a rest area on the way back from the 2009 Champs in Shelbyville!  I am SO glad I got to know you better over these years and I look forward to seeing you, Penny and Jack in Ohio if not before.
Title: Re: Are there Champs specific life skills?
Post by: Maureen deHaan on June 05, 2017, 03:07:43 AM
... but for anyone else who is new....Keep things positive for your dogs and for those who are around you.  Personally, I can only attend Champs every other year when is it closer to me.    So, I have really looked forward to the times I have been fortunate enough to participate.

After waiting approximately 730 days to attend my next Championship, PLEASE, I don't want to be near a single negative thought or  listen to someone vent because they cannot "hang loose". 

Thank you Margaret Mac!! I will be where you are - and we can be a bubble of positivity with room for others :)
Title: Re: Are there Champs specific life skills?
Post by: Kyle on June 05, 2017, 07:45:50 AM
I like the idea of thinking about "life skills" in relation to enjoying Champs more thoroughly! Ric and your friends have already given you some great input, here's a little bit more:

Hang with your happy and supportive friends.

Look for the good, not just the bad in each of your runs. We all know there's gonna be a few boo-boos, but the majority of obstacles you and your dog handle during Champs will be PERFECT and some may even be AMAZING! (Hopefully your happy and supportive friends will remind you of those...  ;D)

Take a step back once in a while and look at the BIG picture. This isn't something you get to do every weekend and these aren't folks you get to see all the time. You and your dog had to accomplish something pretty awesome just to get there! Soak it all in!

Be honest with yourself as to how often you and your dog are going to be able to enjoy this adventure together. Do whatever it takes for *your dog* to enjoy it with you. This is a "life skill" I can really talk about. My old dog, "S'More", LOVED Champs! She and I did some of our best stuff there and we had a ball together. Last year, 13 year old S'More stayed home and while I was at Champs she passed away. She let me and the dogs I had with me know she was there with us that day.   :)

Just have a really great time, OK???  ;D

-Kyle
Title: Re: Are there Champs specific life skills?
Post by: Lorne McGee on June 05, 2017, 10:40:02 AM
Staying positive while getting minimal sleep.


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Title: Re: Are there Champs specific life skills?
Post by: Vicki Storrs on June 05, 2017, 11:36:51 AM
Kyle you made me cry!!  12 year old Jack will be staying home this year.  He only went to Champs twice but he LOVED it!!  Thanks Sharon and NADAC for giving him...and me...the opportunity.
Vicki
Title: Re: Are there Champs specific life skills?
Post by: Chris on Mushtown Road on June 05, 2017, 12:09:04 PM
Eat toffee.


Chris
Title: Re: Are there Champs specific life skills?
Post by: Linda W. Anderson on June 05, 2017, 01:55:28 PM
Eat toffee.


Chris
It's the magical food!!
Linda
Title: Re: Are there Champs specific life skills?
Post by: Richard Wolfe on June 05, 2017, 04:14:28 PM
What Chris said!!!!!!!! MMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM!!!!!!!!
Title: Re: Are there Champs specific life skills?
Post by: Marsha01 on June 06, 2017, 10:01:05 AM
Be prepared to Decorate the stall/crating area in everything purple!  A definite fun activity!
Title: Re: Are there Champs specific life skills?
Post by: Audri, Cee Cee, Lily, Toto, and Calypso on June 06, 2017, 04:20:11 PM
I would suggest a few things.  To remember the course, you have the opportunity to watch MANY teams run so you do get to see the course.   

My favorite thing about Champs was meeting new people from different parts of the country.  I am from the midwest so when I go to champs, I get to meet people from both coasts.

as far as keeping the dogs loose and relaxed, I didn't go for the free crating area.  I opted for a stall.  I just couldn't see my dogs being relaxed for 5 X 14 hour days with all those people and dogs roaming around.  The stalls give them privacy and I can let them out of their crates to roam around a bit too.

Finally, as everyone else has said, just have fun.  I was sooooo nervous my first run of my first champs.  But as I sat and watched the others run before me and their bobbles and errors, I realized that I was no worse or better than any of them and I really did relax. 
Title: Re: Are there Champs specific life skills?
Post by: Foomin Z on June 07, 2017, 06:10:51 PM
Eat toffee.


Chris
Any certain brands?
Title: Re: Are there Champs specific life skills?
Post by: Richard Wolfe on June 07, 2017, 07:01:50 PM
Yes, Chris' toffee is World Famous!!!!!  And she always brings lots of it to share!!!!!!!
Title: Re: Are there Champs specific life skills?
Post by: Heidi Konesko on June 08, 2017, 06:26:05 AM
These are great ideas!  Thank you for taking the time to share your wisdom, perspective, and experience. 
And actually, i may need all these weeks to try out a couple of dairy free toffee recipes...
:)   -Heidi in NH
Title: Re: Are there Champs specific life skills?
Post by: Wild Terriers on June 09, 2017, 06:15:58 AM
Eat toffee.


Chris

I need 2 years worth - I never got any last year!!!  Must have just been in the wrong spots at the wrong times!!!  But, definitely for anyone who hasn't been to Champs - you MUST eat Chris' toffee - it is the BEST!!!

Karen and the wild Terriers
Title: Re: Are there Champs specific life skills?
Post by: Jeff Newman on June 09, 2017, 01:31:32 PM
I am not one to post often to the forum. There are a couple of wonderful pieces of advice I received for my first champs.
1) When crating in a stall or larger area, crate with friends from your area. This allows the dogs to have some sense of ease and relaxation since they are around those people and dogs from the local events.
2) Relax and have a positive attitude no matter what the situation may be. This will also give your team mate a sense of ease.
3) Enjoy the moment. Every moment there is special. When you step to the line, just Smile!!! the bigger the moment the bigger the smile!!!